WASHINGTON, April 4 (UPI) -- A senior aide to U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales says she will not cooperate with a Democratic probe into the firings of federal prosecutors.
Attorneys for Monica Goodling criticized Rep. John Conyers Jr., D-Mich., and Sen. Patrick J. Leahy, D-Vt., for questioning whether Goodling was hiding something by refusing to answer questions about the firings of eight U.S. attorneys last year, The Washington Post reported.
In a letter to House Democrats, the attorneys wrote that Goodling's assertion of her Fifth Amendment rights "can in no way be interpreted to suggest that Ms. Goodling herself participated in any criminal activity."
"Your and Sen. Leahy's recent suggestions to the contrary are unfortunately reminiscent of Sen. Joseph McCarthy, who infamously labeled those who asserted their constitutional right to remain silent before his committee 'Fifth Amendment Communists,'" the attorneys wrote to Conyers and Leahy.
The Post said Deputy Attorney General Paul J. McNulty told Sen. Charles E. Schumer, D-NY., he provided erroneous information to Congress because Goodling and other aides did not fully inform him of the details surrounding the firings.